Friday, February 08, 2008

My Prize from Cardboard Junkie: Rigney, Narum, Boyer World Series

Okay, my latest round of UPS stalking tells me that my package containing a jumbo box of 2008 Topps Series 1 and a jumbo box of 2006 Topps Series 2 (I threw that one in to reach the threshold for free shipping) is likely to arrive today, so I'd better knock this post out while I still have a chance. As the title suggests, these three cards arrived last week from Dave the Cardboard Junkie. I'd won my choice of several fabulous prizes for spotting one of the rogue 2006 Topps '52 Rookies in his 2007 pack rips on A Pack a Day. When offered, I will never turn down 10 Vintage Topps cards. In addition to some very cool Orioles, including a 1958 Gene Woodling, a 1970 ALCS recap card, and a fantastic 1973 Jim Palmer Boyhood Photo, there were the following:
Bill is both my first manager and my first Angels card in the set. As you can see, the team was still known as the Los Angeles Angels, before they became the California Angels, then the Anaheim Angels, and most recently the insipid Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim. Just pick a name and stick with it! That uniform looks pretty sharp, though. Bill suffers from Sparky Anderson disease, in which the rigors of managing ages the subject terribly. Though I'd have pegged him as sixty-five years old at a glance, "The Cricket" was all of forty-six at the time of this photo. Yikes.
Bill served in the Coast Guard during World War II, which may have contributed to his late arrival in the big leagues as a player; he was 28 when he got his start with the Giants as an infielder. He hung around for eight seasons, hitting .259 overall and gaining an All-Star berth in 1948. Three years after his retirement, he became manager of his old team; in fact, he was the last manager of the New York Giants. Rigney was named Manager of the Year in 1962, when he guided the second-year Angels squad to 86 wins and a third-place finish in the American League.

Hey, check it out, a former Oriole! Les actually went by "Buster" for most of his career, and broke in with the Birds in 1963, tossing nine nondescript innings in relief. However, he also hit a home run in his first major league at-bat, a two-run shot off of the legendarily ugly Don Mossi in what would be an 8-5 triumph for the O's.

#135 World Series Game 4: Ken Boyer's Grand Slam

Hey, a World Series card! This is an amazing action shot of a great player; Ken was a five-time Gold Glover and a seven-time All Star while manning the Hot Corner for the Cards. This grand slam was one of Boyer's only big moments with the bat in a thrilling seven-game victory for St. Louis over the Yankees. However, it was a fitting cap to a season in which he won the NL MVP (.295, 24 HR, league-leading 119 RBI). I love Clete's striped stirrups; I think Anthony Reyes is the only current Cardinals player who shows off his stripes on a regular basis. Ken was the lucky one out of the baseball-playing Boyer brothers; you might remember his brother Clete as a solid third baseman for the Yankees, but older brother Cloyd pitched for the Cardinals as well. Clete is bad enough, but who in their right mind names a boy "Cloyd"? Did his father mean to say "Lloyd", but he coughed and the hospital secretary wrote it on the birth certificate like that?

I'll be back soon; another reader is generously sending me a few 1965 Orioles for my collection!

1 comment:

  1. Cardinals and stirrup socks: The Cardinals have a rule that all minor leaguers in the system have to wear the pants high and I believe they have to show the stirrups like Boyer in this photo. I really haven't paid attention to guys that come up, like Brendan Ryan, but I'll have to pay attention to him and Colby Rasmus this year to see if the habits they pick up in Springfield and Memphis carry through to St. Louis.